Birdgehls: responsible tourism & permaculture blog

A woman in a hat and glasses standing in front of the pink Lake Tyrrell in Victoria.
At Lake Tyrrell in Victoria, 2019.

Hello & welcome to Birdgehls

Hi there! My name is LC. I’m an Australia travel writer, photographer, hiker, videographer, yoga practitioner and qualified permaculturist, living in Melbourne. I’m also a Millennial – what can I say, we like to wear many different hats.

I’ve been writing about responsible travel here and across the internet for almost ten years. My area of expertise lies in Australia, particularly Melbourne and Victoria, where I’ve been based for the last eight years.

Birdgehls (the ‘g’ is pronounced “gah”) is a responsible travel and photography blog, focusing primarily on plastic-free living, conservation and adventure travel around Australia. Here’s what you can expect to find on this blog:

  • Responsible travel tips: Particularly tips on travelling plastic free
  • Backyard travel in Australia: Another tier of sustainability – Travel around Australia and particularly in Melbourne
  • Walking: I love to walk and am quite happy to indulge in a spot of forest therapy here and there
  • Nature: we are nature, but sometimes we need a little help re-immersing ourselves in it
  • Off the path travel: I do occasionally go abroad and like to venture to oft’ neglected destinations
  • Expat life: both musings on living abroad and how to make your time overseas a success
  • Culture, art & history: as they tie in quite neatly with sustainability!

What is responsible travel?

A pair of boots sit in front of a graffiti-ed sign on the pavement, which reads 'How much plastic do you use?'.
Definitely something worth considering.

↠ Travel with a conscience & a sense of humour

Founded in 2014, Birdgehls is one of the first Australian blogs to focus on responsible tourism.

I’ve been trying to live a more environmentally friendly and generally compassionate life, well… all my life. This interest was sparked by the 90’s classic TV show Captain Planet and the Planeteers (Wheeler was my first crush and yes, I know he’s a fictional, animated character) and has grown exponentially since 2015.

I started this blog because I want to encourage others to do the same. Responsible travel can often seem quite dry/confusing/expensive, but it really isn’t any of these things.

It’s really just making a series of small changes, which I’ve outlined in my post on responsible travel tips.

Personally, I gave up plastic in 2016 and developed an interest in conservation after a trip to Costa Rica that same year, particularly where birdlife is concerned. Picking up rubbish is an actual hobby – I try to combine it with walks on beaches or around my neighbourhood.

Responsible travel has improved my life, in the best way possible. I’ve learned new skills and met really interesting, like-minded people (community is another fabulous side effect of environmentalism). It’s sparked my creativity, challenged my way of thinking and opened up my mind.

It will do the same for you.

Backyard travel in Australia

A woman in a yellow rain jacket stands in front of big rocks at Wilson Promontory National Park in Victoria.
Rocks. Australia has stacks of them.

I’ve travelled a fair bit overseas and lived in three different countries (Australia, the UK and Qatar), but in 2019 I made a pledge to keep my feet firmly in Australia, at least for the duration of that year.

Of course, then the COVID-19 pandemic hit – so let’s just say I’ve had plenty of time to explore my own country!

This was done partly out of concern of the impact of my own carbon footprint when flying, but also so I could devote more time to exploring Oz.

Birdgehls is currently based in Melbourne and you’ll find extensive coverage on this fantastic city here, such as the best neighbourhoods to explore and unique things to see and do.

A brief history of Birdgehls

A woman in an orange dress wearing a black backpack walks through rows of lavender.

Birdgehls started in a living room out in Zone 5 of West London in 2014. I’d just moved to the UK’s capital and needed a side project to stop me going loopy in between applying for job, after job, after job…

Why the name? The original inspiration came from this haunting song, written by Antony & The Johnsons. Also, because birds are rad and Australians can’t curl the ‘r’ in girls – we pronounce it “gehls”. It’s a bugger to spell, which is something I wish I’d thought of all those years ago, but there you go.

Quick, fun facts

A woman in ski gear holds a glass of mulled wine, against a snowy backdrop.
Exploring the Alpine region of Victoria.

I love writing facts about the places I visit, as it helps me get to really know a place. So, I guess this is a quick way to get to know me, as the travel writer behind this blog:

  1. Alongside this blog, I write and maintain a food-centric newsletter called What’s Cooking with Celine
  2. I’ve been to every state and territory in Australia at least twice and have lived in both New South Wales and Victoria. I also lived in the Middle East and the UK in my twenties.
  3. My favourite states to explore are Tasmania, Victoria and Western Australia. I find them to be the most interesting, but it’s really hard to choose between all eight!
  4. My other big travel goal is to visit every Nordic country and territory. I have three to go and hope to tick Finland off the list in 2024.
  5. Dream travel destinations include Lord Howe Island off the coast of NSW, Greenland, Alaska, Mongolia and Antarctica (although I have conflicted feelings about the last one, as I think it should be only visited for SCIENCE).
  6. I’m a voracious reader, who tracks how many books they read a year. My record is 200.
  7. Call me absolutely dog mad and I won’t be offended. I am companion to a German shepherd who occasionally comes travelling with me and makes the odd appearance on this blog.
  8. I love to cook and pretty much travel to eat. My favourite foods are unagi, udon, bahn mis, cherries, mushrooms, cheese and pretty much any kind of seafood.
  9. Alongside travel, I have a keen interest in permaculture (and am always looking for ways to incorporate permaculture principles into my travels). My goal for 2023 is to establish a kitchen garden at my place.
  10. I’m obsessed with swimming, no matter the weather. If there’s an ocean nearby, I’m throwing myself in it.

That’s probably everything about Birdgehls that you need to know. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me. I can also be found on Pinterest. I don’t really use social media, instead relying on SEO to drive traffic to Birdgehls.

Great to meet you!

– LC

Please note that I DO NOT accept guest posts on this blog. Please don’t contact me asking about guest post opportunities, as we don’t have any.

All content and photos COPYRIGHT to unless otherwise noted. The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used without the prior written permission of Birdgehls.

Acknowledgement of country

I acknowledge the Traditional Owners of the land on which this blog is written, and pay my respects to Elders past and present, and the cultural knowledge holders for our future. Sovereignty was never ceded. Always was, always will be, Aboriginal land.

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